Now we can all breathe a sigh of relief. Here is the official statement issued today by Alaska Airlines. Please note, if you feel more comfortable wearing a mask, please do so.
The Press Release From Alaska Airlines
NOTE – This press release is ver Batum because there are still situations that may require the wearing of face masks.
Face masks have been like boarding passes for nearly two years — you couldn’t fly without one. But, as of today, masks are optional in airports and onboard aircraft, effective immediately.
Due to a judicial decision in our federal court system, the mask mandate has been overturned, which means our guests and employees have the option to wear a mask while traveling in the U.S. and at work.
Note: Guests must continue to wear masks on flights both to and from Canada. Masks must still be worn in airports within Canada, Costa Rica and Mexico. See other special travel instructions.
Safety is always our highest priority, so while we love to see your smiling faces in the airport and onboard, we respect your decision to keep using this added layer of protection. Above all, we hope you’ll treat each other with kindness and respect throughout the travel journey and beyond.
“It has been a long 24 months with nearly constant change. I could not be prouder of our frontline employees who have handled every pivot focusing on safety and the care we’re known for,” said Max Tidwell, VP of safety & security at Alaska Airlines. “We’re also thankful for our guests who remained considerate, patient and stood by us throughout every twist and turn.”
Even as more pandemic protocols and policies ease, our team will remain vigilant and prepared for whatever may come next. Safety remains our top priority. And while we sincerely hope most of these challenges are in our rear-view mirror, we are confident we will be ready to respond if faced with another COVID wave or even a new virus.
What happens to guests who were banned because of not following our previous mask policy? Throughout the last two years, we have relied on reporting from agents and flight attendants to ban non-compliant guests from traveling while the federal mask policy remained in effect. Based on our reports, we will have some guests whose behavior was particularly egregious who will remain banned, even after the mask policy is rescinded.
As always, we will continue to hold safety as our highest value. Thank you again to our loyal guests and team of 22,000 people who came together over the last two years to do the right thing and take care of one another. We’ve proven we can do anything together.
I have been vaccinated and boosted for some time so I feel like I just got my “get out of jail card” and just in time. I am heading to Hawaii on Saturday and will now be able to go maskless. Again, it is about your comfort level. If you feel more comfortable wearing a mask especially if you have preexisting medical issues, please do what you need to do. Aloha.